Can Reading Make You Tired?

People get engrossed in reading stories and novels alike. Fortunately, reading can benefit both your mental and physical health, according to Healthline. While regular reading is good for you, some people find reading to be a tiresome task that makes them sleepy. What exactly causes this tiredness? Is there a link between reading and sleepiness?

Science Focus shares that there are two reasons why someone may tend to catch some z's after reading a book. The first is posture-related, since reading is typically done in a comfortable position, it puts your body into a state of relaxation and reduces stress. It only takes about six minutes of reading to experience a reduction of stress up to 68%, according to The Telegraph.

Secondly, you may be bored, and the desire to sleep triumphs the effort for continued reading, per Science Focus. Boredom from reading most likely has to do with the type of book you're reading (e.g., nonfiction, fiction, magazine) in relation to your interest level. While boredom may seem like an innocent bystander, research from the journal Personality and Individual Differences shows that boredom may impact bedtime procrastination and overall sleep health. Still, reading is generally considered a healthy bedtime routine (per Mayo Clinic).

How to stay alert and enjoy reading more

So, how do you get the most benefits out of reading? The simple answer is to read books you enjoy (via Healthline). While any reading is beneficial, try prioritizing print books over digital books. In 2016, a study from the Journal of Experimental Education tested how reading mediums affect reading comprehension, and found that students who read print texts had better comprehension than those who read digitally.

Brain coach Jim Kwik writes in "Limitless", "There's power to reading [and] these benefits compound over time. The key is consistency" (per CNBC Make It). Kwik points out that one strategy is to grab a book you've always wanted to read and create a daily reading goal around it. Pencil it in on your calendar so you have a clear understanding of when your reading time is.

Another reading tip is to pick a suitable location, according to Oregon State University. Creating parameters around location, how long you want to read, and if you will take notes will help reading feel more manageable.